Simple and Elegant

On November 7th, 2015 I helped bring The World Game (formerly known as the World Game) to life.

World Game, sometimes called the World Peace Game, is an educational simulation developed by Buckminster Fuller in 1961 to help create solutions to overpopulation and the uneven distribution of global resources.

This alternative to war games uses Fuller’s Dymaxion map and requires a group of players to cooperatively solve a set of metaphorical scenarios, thus challenging the dominant nation-state perspective with a more holistic “total world” view.

The idea was to “make the world work for 100% of humanity in the shortest possible time through spontaneous cooperation without ecological damage or disadvantage to anyone,” thus increasing the quality of life for all people. Source – Wikipedia

It was a day full of stress, being overwhelmed, and chaos similar to a toy store on Christmas day. On top of this it was my birthday. Despite all this we banded together as a team and pulled off a miracle.

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Global Game Team. From left to right: Melvin Soh, Marshall Thurber, Donna Bacon, Lee Haber, Me

I met my mentor and friend Marshall Thurber at The Future of Business in October 2013. He’s taught me many lessons, none more important than this one:

The Simplest ideas are the most elegant

I used to complicate things because i thought it was what “smart” people do. Who here has ever cooked a meal from scratch using twenty ingredients when ten would do? Keep it simple, keep it elegant.

This trend keeps appearing. I won’t give too much away but at the end of The Global Game you have a room filled with close to 300 white balloons filled with helium.

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The result of cooperation

At the end we were asking “what are we going to do with these balloons?” “Pop them!” I suggested. Then a voice of reason suggested “let’s give them away to people on the street!”

Our intention was to give a child a batch of 50 balloons and see the look on his face, we deemed this a “diabolical act of kindness” because the parents would not know what to do with 50 balloons.

Off we strolled along The Gold Coast, six people walking along the street with 300 balloons followed behind them. Every person we saw was followed up with “would you like a balloon?”

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Like a star in a dark room a smile lit up their face. This made me realise that the simplest acts bring the most joy. A balloon, a smile, a hug. It was an end to a birthday I wont soon forget.

I have a request of you, do something simple to put a smile on someones face tonight. Tell them you love them, give them a hug, give them a balloon.

Whatever you do, make it simple.

Have a fantastic weekend!
Love,
Michael

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